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Книга Whiplash. Содержание - 53

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Dane said as he shook Deputy Phelps's hand, "Glad you called us right away. Hey, here's my card, you think of anything more, give me a call, doesn't matter what time it is."

Savich and Dane watched Deputy Glen Phelps take Dane's card and ease it with great care into his wallet, right behind his American Express card.

"I've got a business card, too," Phelps said, and blushed as he handed it to Dane. "I just got them, a gift from my mom. She said you just never know when you'll need one. I guess she thought it'd impress people, show what a professional I am." He beamed at them, still blushing as the coroner's van left. "Nasty business. I sure hope you figure all this out."

Savich said, "We will. Thanks again, Deputy Phelps. We've got some folks coming to take the car away. We'll check it over."

"Agent Savich, would you like one of my cards too?"



Jane Ann Royal's Audi was parked at the curb in front of a red-brick Art Deco apartment building, vintage 1930s, set amid thick maples and oaks. It was a lovely old building, beautifully maintained, the greenery lush. Sherlock was thinking it was pretty nice digs for a young tennis pro.

The building was five stories, only six apartments on each floor. Mick Haggarty was in 2D, an end apartment. Sherlock whistled as she walked down the corridor with its thick dark red runner and Art Deco red sconces on the walls, fanning soft light upward.

She paused a moment outside 2D to listen. She heard voices, a man and a woman, but couldn't make out what they were saying. A pity. She knocked. The door was opened almost immediately by Mick Haggarty. He was maybe twenty-four, twenty-five at most, good-looking, no doubt about that, with a nice thin nose, tough square chin, and high cheekbones. He had dark hair, a deep tan, and startling blue eyes, darker than hers. Black Irish, Sherlock thought. He was wearing tennis whites and sneakers, which really looked good on him. All he needed was a racket in his hand and he could pose for the cover of a magazine.

He stared down at her a moment, then, "Who are you? What can I do for you?"

She smiled up at him. He was tall, nearly as tall as Dillon. She handed him her creds. "As you see, I'm Agent Lacey Sherlock, FBI. I'd like to speak with you and Jane Ann."

She watched him hesitate. She reached out her hand and patted his arm as she pulled her ID from his fingers. "No, don't lie, I saw Jane Ann's Audi downstairs and I just heard her speaking." She stepped around him and gave a little wave. "Jane Ann? It's Agent Sherlock. I hope you're feeling all right today. I wanted to give you an update on what's happening."

Jane Ann stood in the middle of a good-sized living room with small Persian carpets scattered on the oak floor. There were floor-to-ceiling windows on two sides of the living room that gave out onto manicured lawns. It was an elegant room with high ceilings and delicate moldings. Jane Ann looked right at home. There was a tray on the coffee table holding two cups and a carafe of coffee. She was wearing black yoga pants with a loose purple top knotted at her side, black ballet slippers on her feet. Her hair was loose around her face, shiny as the polished floor, but she looked pale, her skin tight over her high cheekbones.

"I'm strung out," Jane Ann said as she hurried through the graceful archway. She took Sherlock's hand. "Thank you again for saving me last night. You came so quickly. I knew, I just knew, that those men were going to come in and kill me."

"You had your gun, Jane Ann," Sherlock said. "My money would be on you."

Jane Ann gave her a wobbly smile. "You think? Well, thank you for the vote of confidence. But I don't know, Sherlock, I was so scared I was about to hyperventilate. You and Agent Savich saved the day before I was tested. I just can't stop thinking about it, you know?"

Sherlock lightly laid her hand on Jane Ann's forearm. "It didn't happen, so don't go there. You survived."

Tears sheened her eyes. "It's difficult. I was so scared. Here I am going on about how I felt, and they murdered Caskie. How must he have felt when they gunned him down? Please tell me you've caught them. Were they from Schiffer Hartwin?"

"We don't know yet who's responsible. Do you believe they were from Schiffer Hartwin? You think they sent killers to murder Caskie?"

"I was thinking they'd make Caskie the scapegoat. All they had to do was have him killed, and then he couldn't defend himself."

"Yes, that's true. And you're exactly right about one thing, they're doing just that-blaming your husband for all of it, from the planned Culovort shortage, to the murder of Mr. Blauvelt in Van Wie Park. Who knows if it will fly in the long run. The thing is, Jane Ann, we've already traced two different accounts Caskie had in offshore banks. The sum came to just under four hundred thousand dollars, not nearly enough for a mastermind."

Jane Ann drew in several deep controlled breaths. "He had four hundred thousand dollars?" She closed her eyes a moment. "That bastard."

"I bet he was going to run off," Mick Haggarty said from his post at the front door. "I bet he was going to leave you and your kids high and dry, Jane Ann."

"Very probably," Sherlock said, not taking her eyes off Jane Ann Royal. "Can you think of anyone else, Jane Ann? Anyone other than someone from Schiffer Hartwin who'd want him dead badly enough to invade your home?"

"I still can't accept that my own husband was a criminal. But one thing I do know for sure, he wasn't a murderer, he wasn't, Sherlock."

"Maybe not."

"All right. Let me think about this. As far as I know Caskie didn't have any personal enemies-wait, unless you count Carla Alvarez, maybe. She's very passionate, about causes, politics, business. Caskie would say she'd fly off the handle and people would scatter. Maybe she figured out he was going to dump her and she sent some men over to kill him."

"Did you speak to Caskie about her, after you spoke to me and Erin Pulaski? Did he tell you he was breaking it off with Carla?"

"No, no, it's just his pattern. Like I told you, Caskie was a cheat, but he was a very predictable cheat. He always followed the same pattern-intense flirtation, romantic little hideaway dinners, lots of sex-no one could outdo Caskie's sex talk-then no more mystery, and he was out the door. Oh, I don't know, Sherlock, I'm just talking, trying to figure this out. But Carla's tough, tougher than I am, that's for sure. Nobody gives her grief because of that hair-trigger temper of hers."

"If not Carla, then how about the manager of accounting, Turley Drexel, I think his name is?"

Jane Ann said, "I hadn't considered him. Yeah, they slept together. I remember the night it all started. It was a barbecue at one of the manager's homes in Stone Bridge. Turley was all over Carla that evening, wouldn't let her out of his sight. I thought he'd even follow her to the bathroom. I remember thinking he was probably a real loss in bed, he just gave off that vibe, you know? I couldn't imagine he'd be of any practical use to her. He didn't even look particularly nice on her arm. I decided maybe Carla was desperate.

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